Methane Manure

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Methane Manure

Methane Manure Recovery from Animal Manures The Current Opportunities Casebook, by National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Colorado, 1998.

Abstract: Growth and concentration of the livestock industry create opportunities for the proper disposal of the large quantities of manures generated at dairy, swine, and poultry farms. Pollutants from unmanaged livestock wastes can degrade the environment, and methane emitted from decomposing manure may contribute to global climate change.

One management system not only provides pollution prevention but also can convert a manure problem into a new profit center. Economic evaluations and case studies of operating systems indicate that the anaerobic digestion (AD) of livestock manures is a commercially available bioconversion technology with considerable potential for providing profitable coproducts,
including a cost-effective renewable fuel for livestock production operations.

This Casebook examines some of the current opportunities for the recovery of methane from the AD animal manures. U.S. livestock operations currently employ four types of anaerobic digester technology: slurry, plug-flow, complete-mix, and covered lagoon. An introduction to the engineering economies of these technologies is provided, and possible end-use applications for the methane gas generated by the digestion process are discussed. The economic evaluations are based on engineering studies of digesters that generate electricity from the recovered methane.

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